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Straight Man: A Novel Paperback – June 9, 1998

4.3 out of 5 stars 602 ratings

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"The Eighth Sister" by Robert Dugoni
A pulse-pounding thriller of espionage, spy games, and treachery by the New York Times bestselling author of the Tracy Crosswhite Series. | Learn more
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"The funniest serious novel I have read since--well, maybe since Portnoy's Complaint." -- Tom De Haven, The New York Times Book Review

"There is a big, wry heart beating at the center of Russo's fiction." --The New Yorker

"[Russo] skewers academic pretensions and infighting with mad abandon...in a clear and muscular prose that is a pleasaure to read....I had to stop often to guffaw, gasp, wheeze, and wipe away my tears." -- Henry Kisor, Chicago Sun-Times

"Bursting with humor and insight." --USA Today

From the Inside Flap

In this uproarious new novel, Richard Russo performs his characteristic high-wire walk between hilarity and heartbreak.  Russo's protagonist is William Henry Devereaux, Jr., the reluctant chairman of the English department of a badly underfunded college in the Pennsylvania rust belt.  Devereaux's reluctance is partly rooted in his character--he is a born anarchist-- and partly in the fact that his department is more savagely divided than the Balkans.  

In the course of a single week, Devereaux will have his nose mangled by an angry colleague, imagine his wife is having an affair with his dean, wonder if a curvaceous adjunct is trying to seduce him with peach pits, and threaten to execute a goose on local television.  All this while coming to terms with his philandering father, the dereliction of his youthful promise, and the ominous failure of certain vital body functions.  in short, Straight Man is classic Russo--side-splitting and true-to-life, witty, compassionate, and impossible to put down.

Product details

  • Item Weight : 11 ounces
  • Paperback : 391 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0375701907
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0375701900
  • Publisher : Vintage (June 9, 1998)
  • Product Dimensions : 5.16 x 0.84 x 7.98 inches
  • Language: : English
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.3 out of 5 stars 602 ratings
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